Co-founder, Pinnacle eAt
Morgan Chang says his career path has been “slightly convoluted.” The Hongkonger graduated from Georgetown University in the US and then moved back home, working in strategy and tech consulting, followed by a role in an apparel startup.
“I actually was planning on going to culinary school during my gap year, but instead chose the business path — but ended up back in food anyway,” he says.
He was at now-closed Stone Nullah Tavern to greet the team, when he noticed that they were short-staffed, back in 2015. “Since I knew the menu well enough, suggested that I help out on a part-time basis.”
Chang ended up staying in the food and beverage industry, later becoming head chef at nutritional meal delivery service Lean by Design. In 2016, he was approached by the directors of fitness chain Pinnacle Performance to start Pinnacle eAt together.
Founded as the health meal delivery service arm of the gym, Pinnacle eAt was born in 2017. It advocates for balanced lifestyles through nutritious meal plans. “I’ve always loved food, and also loved leading an active lifestyle. Over time, I taught myself enough to know how to sustain a healthy and balanced lifestyle, and felt that this was something that Hong Kong desperately needed more of,” he says.
Menus are changed on a weekly basis “so that clients won’t get tired of eating our food as quickly” — and this also means the service is customizable and customer-centric, Chang explains. “We also make it a point to have food that actually tastes good, because that matters and it’s not sustainable to eat under-seasoned, steamed food all the time.” To amp up the flavor factor, Pinnacle eAt is now partnering with Hong Kong bistro Bread and Beast (founded by The Loop’s 2016 30 Under 30 winner Chris Cheung).
Chang’s journey hasn’t been a smooth one all the way — he says his parents initially didn’t support his career change, until he started to receive recognition. He also recalls “going into the kitchen on days off at 7am and helping to prep — and leaving before the team showed up, just to help out”. He credits his parents as being his role models, however, and says the “obsession” in the kitchen helped him realize just how much he loved food.
His first job? Internship with events and talent management company IMG in Beijing.
What inspires him? “The work ethic that I’ve witnessed from my parents for as long as I can remember, and people who go out of their way to help others.”
See the full list of The Loop HK’s 30 Under 30 Class of 2019.